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Posts Tagged ‘Michael Scherer’

W.H. Comm. Director On Internet News Cycle: ‘There Is Basically A Constant Swirl Going On’


TIME‘s Michael Scherer takes a look into how the White House is managing a news cycle that seems to move exponentially faster with each passing day. From the story:

“We have a theory of how the news media work in this Internet age,” explains Dan Pfeiffer [pictured], the buzz-cut 34-year-old who recently became the third person to serve as Obama’s communications director. “There is basically a constant swirl going on.”

This twister still includes the newspaper front pages, nightly news broadcasts and magazine covers that can often shape the national debate. But it also incorporates Sarah Palin‘s Facebook page, the latest Internet attack videos and that e-mail your aunt just sent you. “There is a constant conversation that goes on all day long, through blogs, through cable TV, through Twitter, between reporter, subject and reader,” says Pfeiffer, who sits down the hall from the Oval Office. He says his new job is to “make sure we are not getting swallowed up by the swirl.”

PRNewser has spoke with a number of political PR operatives who have said the fast changing news cycle is one of the reasons why the Obama press team has become more active on Twitter, in an attempt to squash incorrect or incomplete stories there, before they bubble up to mainstream media.

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Robert Gibbs on New Comm. Strategy: ‘The Only Way to Get Somebody to Stop Crowding the Plate is to Throw a Fastball at Them. They Move.’


The White House communications team is no longer taking prisoners when it comes to dealing with adversaries in the media. The administration, instead of just working through the media to fact check stories and statements, is going direct to the source.

The president approves the strategy, telling aides to “call ‘em out,” when it comes to “pundits, politicians and outlets that make what the White House believes to be misleading or simply false claims,” writes TIME‘s Michael Scherer in a story today, titled “Calling ‘Em Out: The White House Takes on the Press.”

“The general in this war is [Anita] Dunn, 51, a veteran campaign strategist who arrived at the White House in May. She has been a force in Democratic campaigns since the late 1980s and helmed Obama’s rapid-response operation during his run,” he wrote.

Dunn told TIME, “Here in the White House you are reluctant to feel like you have to go to that place, but we have to be more aggressive rather than just sit back and defend ourselves, because they will say anything. They will take any small thing and distort it.” White House Press Secretary Robert Gibbs used a baseball analogy. “The only way to get somebody to stop crowding the plate is to throw a fastball at them. They move,” he said.